Eagle-eyed devotees of "Attack on Titan" may have noticed fan-favorite character Levi is absent from the trailers and posters for the live-action adaptation. There's a simple explanation for that: He's not in the films.
That's just one of the drastic changes to the material that screenwriter Tomohiro Machiyama told Japan's Cinema Today will have fans "rather heated."
Major alterations to nominal protagonist Eren came at the behest of "Attack on Titan" creator Hajime Isayama. While the manga and anime portray him as a boy who vows to destroy every Titan following the death of his mother, in the films Eren is an ordinary kid who denies their existence, only to be crippled with fear at the sight of the giants. The relationship between Eren and his adoptive sister is also changed, so that she's more of a love interest who inspires him to fight.
Machiyama said Isayama pleaded with the filmmakers to make Eren more "sympathetic as a shōnen manga hero."
The abrasive -- but much-loved -- Levi, on the other hand, was collateral damage as the story's setting was changed was Germany to Japan amid concerns about having Japanese actors in Caucasian roles. That created a problem with Levi, as no Japanese name would typically include the katakana "vu." Although the filmmakers considered giving all of the characters Japanese names, they opted instead to drop Levi.
"Attack on Titan" opens Aug. 1 in wide release in Japan, followed Sept. 19 by "Attack on Titan: End of the World."
(via Anime News Network)